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Siege Musings - Sir Thomas Fairfax

On the trail of a key figure in York's Civil War fortunes, Sir Thomas Fairfax. When Charles I attempted to raise his standard in York in June 1642 Sir Thomas was chosen to represent the local nobility to express their unhappiness with his cause of action. He played a crucial role at Marston Moor alongside his father and brother (who was killed) and subsequently Parliament made him commander of the New Model Army. But in 1649 he distanced himself from the move to kill Charles and didn't sign the death warrant. Considered an honorable man by his contemporaries (including Charles) he prevented the Scottish and Parliamentarian armies from destroying stained glass and monuments in York and the Minster.

Plaque, the Chapter House, York Minster, commemorating the role Sir Thomas Fiarfax and his father played in saving the stained glass of the Minster

He is buried in the modest-sized parish church in the quiet village of Bilbrough, not far from Marston Moor or his family home of Nun Appleton (Appleton Roebuck).

Tomb of Sir Thomas Fairfax, St James' Church, Bilbrough

Tomb of Sir Thomas Fairfax, St James' Church, Bilbrough

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